Greenpoint Residents May Start Wearing Air Pollution Collars

November 18, 2014 | Amy K. Nelson

A scientist wants locals in Greenpoint to wear air-pollution detectors around their necks to create a real-time picture of all the various toxins floating around the neighborhood, according to the Brooklyn Paper.

Michael Heimbinder is the founder of HabitatMap, “which builds tools for community organizing around environmental issues.” His current creation is called the Air Casting Greenpoint:

is a piece of blue-plastic bling that sniffs the air several times a second and sends the results to an Android phone, which then analyzes the data and sends them to an online database. Taken together, the data can create snapshot and minute-to-minute heat maps of air pollution. Seeing the results will make participants feel like the effort is worth it, Heimbinder said.

Heimbinder hopes to get a $200k-plus round of funding from an oil spill in the neighborhood that was three times the size of the Exxon Valdez spill, and which netted the community $19.5 million. If granted the money, Heimbinder will seek 240 volunteers to wear his device around their necks.

(Photo: Danny.)